State hockey coach discovers talents in Sibunew

The three girls (from left) Yusnani Jeffrey, Gloria Daniel and Rachel Jurin with coach Nis Henry.

Hockey players train on a grass field with a dry sandy pitch.

KUCHING: Despite poor facilities or almost non-existent in Sibu, Sarawak hockey head coach Chellapah Sivasubramaniam was in for a surprise when he went for a coaching clinic at the TN Indoor Stadium from Nov 3 to 5.

He managed to find four players who were so talented that they could have walked straight into the Sarawak Sukma shadow team.

Yusnani Jeffrey, Rachel Jusrin and Gloria Daniel from SMK Sibu Jaya and Emilia Ruga Omar from SMK Rosli Dhoby convinced Sivasubramaniam enough to bring them along with the Sarawak Sukma squad for exposure to proper training facilities.

“I was surprised by what I found in the four girls who were very strong physically and their skills new techniques, they instantly were able to apply it.

“Despite the pathetic pitches as I would describe it, they had such a high level of skills as the four mentioned outshone the rest. If they trained regularly, they will be national team material,” said Sivasubramaniam

“They are good due to the very good job done by the coaches such as Nis Henry Mumut from Sibu Jaya and Leonardo Edmund Akau from SMK Rosli Dhoby.

“I will be bringing them to train in Kuching where the Sukma training starts next year and I will be discussing with Sukma ladies chief coach Catherine Lambor about them,” he added.

In the meantime, the girls have been given a special programme to them to train and ensure that their fitness level are up to par.

Sivasubramaniam also praised the local coaches such as Leonardo and Nis Henry who had done a very good job to nurture them and built them up despite lacking good facilities and limited equipment.

He wants the four girls to train in Kuching and be transferred to SMK Paku.

There are currently 30 players in the Sarawak Sukma shadow team and the number will be trimmed to 24 at a later stage in their training.

Sixty selected secondary school students aged 17 and below and 10 teacher-coaches attended the coaching clinic conducted in the morning and afternoon sessions.

Other coaches involved in the clinic were S Srisakunathan @ Murti, Pamela Tia, Netty Elvis, Vernity Ricky and Nelyana Aling while SSC coordinator for hockey Beatrice Sawing was also present.

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